DAR ES SALAAM, March 10 (Xinhua) -- Health ministers of the member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) have commended China's anti-coronavirus efforts and pledged continued solidarity with China and other countries affected by the virus, SADC Executive Secretary Stergomena Tax said here Monday evening.
Speaking at the end of a one-day meeting on COVID-19 among SADC health ministers, Tax said "China assured the meeting that all SADC citizens, including students, are being taken care of in terms of prevention and monitoring, and no one has been affected."
China also extended gratitude to the 16 SADC member states for expressing solidarity during this difficult time, Tax added.
The health ministers praised the World Health Organization and the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for their joint anti-virus efforts, while urging all SADC member states to put in place national response plans as well as contingency and emergency funds to mitigate possible impacts from COVID-19, she said.
They also recommended a temporary suspension of regional face-to-face meetings and encouraged using modern technology such as video conferences, Skype calls and webinars, she added.
The meeting gathered health ministers from 10 member states, including the minister from Tanzania, current chair of the SADC. Those from Comoros, Madagascar, Mozambique, Botswana, Eswatini and Seychelles did not attend.
The SADC is a Botswana-based inter-governmental organization established in 1992 to further socio-economic cooperation and integration as well as political and security cooperation among 16 southern African countries.